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The Curse of the Ripped Blade

The Croaky House

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Oct 6th, 5:24 pm Das was following the lonely, stoney cracked path through the graveyard slowly and carefully. As he was walking, rain started to cover the evening sky and night began to fall rapidly. Dips and branches caught at his feet making him stumble. Clouds had now drifted fully across the darkening sky. It was a black, black night. Das reached for his flashlight and flicked on it for a quick look at his watch. The light didn’t work. He tried again, it still didn’t work. The batteries seemed to be dead!. The towering trees were swaying back and forth in the strong wind lowering their branches. Their shadows seemed to Das as if they were trying to grab him. He slowly walked through the slushy mud and the damp leaves to the lonely cursed house in search of the ‘ treasure’. As he came closer near the house, the air stincked of fish. images (8) Das finally reached the massive gate of the old abandoned house. With nothing more than the occasional lightning’s to guide him, the thought of the “riches” he’s going to acquire made him forget the scary path he took. His heart started to beat faster. As he entered the house, he could see dust lay over every surface, dust bunnies in the size of bowling balls tumbled across the floor boards. Old tea-cups lay on the coffee table thickly encrusted with dried up coffee and the smell of mild dew was in air. Shafts of light were bursting through the window. There was absolute silence. The house’s only occupants had weaved their webs between spindles of the stair banisters and from ceiling to the walls criss-crossing.

He moved from the hall slowly to the next room on his left. Cobwebs brushed his face as he stepped deeper in to the house. He took the old folded letter again from his pocket. He re-read the lines again the 10th time

Buried are the richer where cold now sits in space once ruled by warmth”.

The word ‘riches’ made him to imagine a treasure chest full of gold and silver. And somewhere in this house must be those ‘riches’. He set his eyes to the end of the letter where it was written ‘Croak Croak’ bizarrely and a picture of a hooded frog! Strange to him it was, but to him now those words were not so important. All he cared about was to decipher the riddle and find out where the treasure is. He folded the letter and put it back in his pantaloons.

He continued his search near the stairs. The stairs ahead were twisted in a perfect spiral, like a child’s slinky toy pulled from each end. He walked slowly to the top leaving his shoe prints behind. The place felt unnaturally still, and the only sound he could hear was his own breathing and the creek beneath his feet with each and every step he took. Das felt a pinch of nervousness now. He examined each and every corner of the house in search of his dream. He descended down and walked around into a large room on his right with a fireplace. He then turned to his left and found a smaller room that could have been a kitchen. A grey wooden cupboard, where food must have been kept, was all that remained there. Insects and plants had claimed the place as their own.

He strolled to the hall way thinking of where the treasure could be. By this time he started to sweat with both of fear and of the damp atmosphere. He frantically kicked some boards out of his way, checked the floor, and found nothing yet again. It was becoming hopeless for him. Time was running out and night seemed to fall faster and darker. The sound of the crickets, whistling winds and the eerie silence that prevailed made him stand stumped.

Suddenly it dawned to him: he never searched the fireplace yet! He quickly returned to the room where it was. The fireplace was the answer to the riddle. He recollected the riddle again

Buried are the richer where cold now sits in space once ruled by warmth”.

It made sense to him now. A sense of excitement came upon him. He bent near the fireplace and went through the layers of the brick. His fingers got sore but that didn’t anyway stop him from digging more dirt. Eventually while he was reaching for the final layer of dirt for which he came prepared for, he didn’t notice the shadow of the hooded frog cross him. Suddenly he felt something spooky.

A strange and unusual croaking of a frog so near him made Das turn alarmingly. With the sight of the hooded frog man shouting at him making strange noises and gestures with fingers, Das’s heart skipped a beat. A shot of terror went through him, he yelled at the top of his lungs. He took his hands off the fireplace forcefully without noticing the cruse he had acquired. It was already late when Das realised what had happened. The cursed ripped blade had already tasted his blood and cast its evil spell on him.

Folks at his village had warned him before of the strange, supernaturally ripped blade that the abandoned house hosts. But then, Das was not prepared to listen to them. His curious mind was always behind the riddle and the treasure it could bring him. Now, the sight of the ripped blade with his blood and the hooded frog man made Das faint with a huge thud on the dusty carpet.

Oct 16 7:00am

Exactly after ten days of Das’s missing spree, the village woke up with the terrifying death news of him. He was found dead on an abandoned car hitting terribly on a tree along hillside. Anyone seeing the scene was able to visualize that as just an fatal accident out of harsh driving. Aman closed his eyes, tears rolled down his eyes hoping this should all be a dream and all these would stop. But it wasn’t. It was real and now he stands there losing his childhood friend to the mystery behind the cursed ripped blade and the treasure it protects.

What will happen next ?  Will Aman give food for the Sherlock Holmes in him? Will he uncover the mystery behind the cursed blade? or will the curse continue ?

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#Let’s make it happen

Published on Women’s Web on March 8th http://www.womensweb.in/2015/03/do-we-need-an-international-womens-day/

On Sunday, the 8th March, a number of my friends will post something on their social media networks to celebrate Womanhood or speak out against gender inequality. Yes! International Women’s Day makes it easy for young generation to put on their part-time activist t-shirts, ordinary people to get excited about Women’s rights, Media to make money with special programs, debates and brands to sell more! As the day approach, everywhere you see articles on women empowerment, feminism, women’s rights and so on… All these are like one-day matches, very interesting, sensational and talk of the town. The next day it kind of vanishes in air. We need to screw ourselves and think seriously on this.

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It is bliss to be a woman. She is looked as an epitome of love, compassion, embraces all hardships just to keep her family and loved ones happy! But the irony is she is being denied of equal rights and opportunities as men. She has to really struggle hard to fight for her dignity she deserves. The respect that should come naturally is not even received even on demand!

When this is the situation prevailing even now, let me put forth an important question.

Why do we need an International Women’s Day? We, women comprise over half of population in the world, so why do we get our own day! Why is this special celebration, just for women?

arton6310-e71a5 In spite of being over half of the population, women are half of nothing!

Yes! Are we half of policy makers? No!

Are we half of corporate executives? Nope!

Or at least half of decision makers? Not even close!

But there is a lot of other ‘yes’s

Women do consist of half of world’s population in extreme poverty! We are well over half of the victims of domestic abuse, violence, and physical assault and rape.

(http://www.unwomen.org/en/what-we-do/ending-violence-against-women/facts-and-figures)

(http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs239/en/)

These statistics are not worth celebrating. Let me make it clear, this is not about making men half of those horrible statistics; it’s about making world a better, safer place for all. I think “women issues should be looked as Human rights issues!”

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Though women are increasingly holders of financial and economic clout and their consumer purchasing, investment and financial power are gradually rising, we need to work out on it more.

So, coming back to the question again, do we really need to celebrate International Women’s Day?

Well, we NEED it

  • Because when this was first celebrated over 100 years ago, it brought few rights for women in every country throughout the world, including the right to vote.
  • Because women all over the world are still far from achieving the true gender equality
  • Because this year UN’s IWD theme is “Make it Happen” And above all

Because we are Women! Who have stood up against all odds, and will continue to until the idea of celebrating a day for women becomes obsolete!

Now isn’t this something to be celebrated!  But let’s not forget to celebrate being a woman every day, every minute and every second.